Local blogger Edmund Tay, 49, has come a long way since he started his online journal Edunloaded back in 2009. The blog started from a young father’s simple desire to chronicle the exploits of his three growing children and share them with his circle of family and friends. It has since evolved into one of Singapore’s best-loved daddy blogs.
“At that time, the grandparents were asking for updates about the kids. I thought the best way is to write and upload their photos to one collective place. It was also a good way to record the milestones we had as a family.”
Blogging and bonding as a family
Over the years, blogging has played a part in helping his family of five bond. His blog focuses on wholesome topics and family-friendly activities appealed to readers who are mainly young parents. Marketeers who wanted to reach out to this target audience came a-knocking, giving Edmund and his family opportunities to try out new experiences. This ranged from first dibs to new places of interest to staycations at local hotels, and even the occasional family trip overseas.
“It was a big perk for us because as a family we could do things together. We shared experiences and had fun together. We enjoyed our journey as family, and (the blog) gave us a lot of fond memories to look back on.”
Sharing his own parenting struggles online has also helped readers relate to him. One example was his teenage daughter’s health issues. Edmund and his wife Jiahui, who also blogs, had talked about their daughter’s recent brain operation after suffering from seizures.
Readers who faced similar issues got in touch to share with him about their own struggles and to ask for advice. His blog and the personal stories he shared became a connecting point between him and his fellow parents.
Image source: Edmund Tay
Daddies then and now
Reflecting on how much the role of fathers has changed in just a generation, Edmund pointed out that dads changing diapers is now the norm. He shared an incident from early on in his parenting journey.
“I remember I was carrying my daughter around in a sling at the market. This old grandmother came up to me and gave me a big thumbs-up. I think that’s a good sign of how society views fathers who play an active role in the family.”
For Edmund, fathers are no longer just breadwinners. They are equal partners in their marriages and who pull their weight as co-parents in the family. For the church pastor and wedding solemniser of more than 10 years, it starts from building a strong foundation as a couple. His favourite advice for newly-wed couples: Accept each other’s differences and learn to accommodate one another in their marriage.
As an experienced father who enjoys watching his children grow, his suggestion is simple: “Fathers play a key role in a family. Spend quantity time with your kids – not just quality time – and do things you enjoy together”.